THUNDER BAY – Crimebeat – Macleans Magazine has released a report on the most dangerous cities in Canada. Thunder Bay is the 17th most dangerous city in our country according to the results released this morning by the magazine. The city is ranked 7th in terms of violent crime. Thunder Bay’s homicide rate is 4.3 per 100,000 population, and the rate in our city is 163.3% different than the Canadian average. Our rate for robbery, sexual assault, aggrevated assault and breaking and entering are all above the Canadian averages.
The rankings for most dangerous cities, has Thunder Bay, ranked number 7, as the most dangerous city in Ontario for violent crime.
Gang wars, drug abuse and an alleged serial killer guaranteed Prince George, B.C., the top spot on Maclean’s fourth annual crime ranking of Canada’s 100 largest cities. Year after year, Western cities dominate the rankings as the worst for crime. And, in reverse, the most populous cities in Ontario and Quebec consistently score well. Toronto’s overall crime score ranking is No. 52, exactly where it was in 2000. However, on the East Coast, St. John’s, Nfld., is finding its new prosperity carries a dark side—a rising crime score.
The brightest spot in terms of reducing crime in a major city is Vancouver. Macleans states, “It has gone in the span of a decade from having some of the worst violent and non-violent crime scores in Canada to become one of its most improved. Its overall crime score plunged 49 per cent in 10 years, more than twice the rate of improvement of the country as a whole.”
Perhaps some of the innovative and progressive efforts in Vancouver have helped. The Vancouver Police Department has taken a far greater approach at engaging the public online, including social media, Youtube and Twitter.
That appears to be working. One area, plaguing Thunder Bay has been property crime. Macleans writes, “Property crime, much of it fuelled by addiction, has been a plague in Vancouver. Surveilling chronic offenders and gathering evidence of “the full nature of their offences” to present to judges is the ?rst step to gaining longer sentences. The next move is more social worker than beat cop. Detectives visit offenders in jail and discuss the needs for their release, whether it be detox, housing or other social support to stop their cycle of crime. “We’ve got some very creative, compassionate detectives who build up a rapport with these guys. I’ve gotten emails and letters saying, ‘Hey chief, detective so-and-so was just great with me. First guy that cared about me in years. I’m doing better now because of what he did for me.’ ”
Vancouver is ranked 18th on the overall rankings, but is headed quickly to being a far safer city based on the statistics.
Read the Maclean’s Magazine Report here.